Croton Gorge Park

Region: Hudson Valley

Level: Easy

Croton Gorge Park is located in Croton-on-Hudson, NY in Westchester County. The Park is 97 acres, includes a few miles of trails, picnic area, and of course the great picturesque views and bridge walk-way over the Gorge.

Croton Gorge, including the New Croton Dam. 

The Dam, originally Old Croton Dam created in 1842 and re-created as New Croton Dam for wihch construction began half a century later, is really special to see - it's massive (for a small town in Westchester). The rock formation that sits underneath the Dam bridge is fantastic. I wish it was permitted to access the area under the bridge, but until you are near the waterfall you don't really see just how powerful it is. To let people around the area would be too dangerous given the chances of getting too close to the waterfall. It's that powerful.  

New Croton Reservoir from the top of the Dam walkway

The trails, including the River Trail which brings you along the Croton River, and the Aqueduct Trail, which may bring you all the way to Gerlach Park if you so choose, are very easy trails and are often used for cross-country skiing, biking and running. From the main area of the park, you can take both trails southwest, which brings you away from the Dam, and depending on how far you want to go, can really be a nice, easy nature walk before taking the Aqueduct trail back towards the Dam and heading over the top bridge to get some great views of the New Croton Reservoir to the East, and the Croton River and rocky, waterfall views to your West. 

Once I did all my walking around the park and got my fair share of views from the Gorge in, I decided to instead of calling an Uber from the park, to take the walk through town back to the train. I managed to get some ice cream at a local parlor - the Blue Pig - and had a beer at the Green Growler, a sweet little craft beer spot right next to the train station. Overall, this is more of a nature walk in a nice park vs. a hike. A great trip for New Yorkers and others who don't want to travel too far north and feel like having a nice easy walk around a small town while getting picturesque views of a historical, beautiful Dam and Gorge. If you check it out, hope you enjoy!

-Kyle Holmes